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On eclipse day, Texas winery to release wine with grapes harvested during 2017 eclipse

Imelda García, The Dallas Morning News on

Published in Fashion Daily News

DALLAS -- If you’re a wine or eclipse enthusiast, you might want to keep an eye out for a special release from Farmhouse Vineyards.

The Texas-based winery is set to release a wine called The Observer on April 8, the day of the Great North American Eclipse. The grapes used to make it were harvested seven years ago during another eclipse.

Only 20 cases of this limited-edition wine were produced, and only 16 are for sale, so it’s sure to be a hot commodity among collectors.

“You’ll never find a more handcrafted, curated, cultivated wine in your life than this one,” said Katy Jane Seaton, co-owner of Farmhouse Vineyards. “This is a wine full of meaning for us, and we want to share it with the world.”

The Observer’s story began in August 2017, when Seaton was traveling with her youngest son, McClain, to a wedding in Oregon on the day of a total solar eclipse.

Seeing the commotion in that area, where everyone was watching the total eclipse, Seaton called her older sister to tell her what was happening. She told her the next big eclipse was seven years away and could be seen over Texas.

“And I could hear her Googling and typing. And she said, ‘Oh, my gosh, you are in the Hill [Country], you will be in the path of totality, you have to do something,’ ” Seaton said.

That day, at the winery’s vineyard in Brownfield, the crew harvested grapes when the eclipse partially darkened the sky. Seaton called Traci Ferguson, her sister-in-law, and asked if they had any grapes that were not for sale or under contract.

“It really was very little,” Seaton said. “[It] made one barrel, and [was] so small. But I [told] her, ‘Hold it, and guard it with your life.’ ”


Furgeson documented the harvest and captured images of the sun during the partial eclipse. One of those photographs was of the sun and its trail of light, which would become the image on the bottle of The Observer, named by a family friend who was inspired by reading the definition of an eclipse.

The grapes were barrel-fermented for four years and bottled in July 2021. The red wine blend is made from a combination of Mourvèdre, Grenache and Syrah grapes. The bottles will finally be sold on April 8 after a journey of nearly seven years.

This wine costs $500 a bottle, which includes two VIP tickets to an eclipse viewing event at Farmhouse Vineyards Marketplace Tasting Room in Johnson City.

“Our winemaker, Tim Drake, said to us that not everyone will drink this wine at this event. Some people are going to buy this wine for their children’s graduation, for their wedding,” Seaton said. “This is a landmark wine meant for landmark moments, so it is built to last years beyond here.”

Farmhouse Vineyards also created Come and See It, a commemorative wine for the 2023 Ring of Fire eclipse, still available at the more affordable price of $35.

Farmhouse Vineyards is owned by Anthony and Traci Furgeson and Katy Jane and Nicholas Seaton, multigeneration farmers who own 7,000 acres on which they grow cotton, peanuts, black-eyed peas, hemp, melons, pumpkins, various grains and Texas grapes. They also raise Dorper sheep and Akbash dogs, known for being livestock guard dogs. Farmhouse Vineyards has locations in the Texas High Plains and in Texas Hill Country.


The eclipse viewing event Come and See It will be on April 8 at Farmhouse Vineyards Marketplace Tasting Room, at 402 E. Main St., Johnson City, Texas. You can get two VIP tickets if you buy a bottle of The Observer. To get two general admission tickets, you must buy a three-bottle pack of Come and See It.

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